The light was brilliant, a pinprick at first and then growing as if an iris dilating. There was movement within, shadows darting, fingers pointing. Voices called to me, first my mother’s, then a few more and a few more until there was a great cacophony of shouting and pleading and wailing as well.
I dearly wanted to advance, to meld with this
sun, but I could feel myself pulling away. I screamed. I had no control,
I was slipping backward. The voices were getting louder, the light,
dimmer. Suddenly the tunnel vanished and my eyes shot open to be
welcomed by a scene of gristle and bone and blood. My own of course, my
life shattered into a million shards, my destiny remade by the wishes of
one zealot in a small market in a country I’d not even known the name
of before the day I’d enlisted.